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Correspondence - Why Letters
The typical method used for establishing contact with Russian women is via letters. However, some men have chosen an alternative of traveling to Russia with a group of men and meeting Russian women through social gatherings. I do not recommend relying on social gatherings as your only method of meeting your future wife. Rather, try a combination of writing letters and group tours. A major advantage of group tours is they help you overcome the problem of geographical logistics. Select a group tour that will visit multiple cites, then you can write women living within or near the cities for arranged meetings while on the tour (a win-win situation).
A word of advice on attending social gatherings. If you do not speak Russian, then hire your own personal interpreter for the social gathering. You want the flexibility to speak with any woman, when you want - not the availability of some general interpreter.
Local Russian Marriage Agencies
Another alternative to correspondence, is visiting marriage agencies with an office located in Russia while you are in Russia. These offices will typically have a catalog of the women they represent, which you may search through. Prices vary considerably, but agencies typically charge $20 - $40 for each woman you select. Remember to only select women with telephones, for you may not have time for correspondence. I strongly recommend visiting local Russian marriage agencies as an adjunct to correspondence. Russian women are becoming somewhat jaded to correspondence, by the large number of letters they receive compared to few men who actually travel to meet them. A woman who does not respond to your initial letter, may gladly choose to meet you in person. Also you may find recent additions of women in the local agencies catalog which have not been posted to the Internet (i.e. less competition). To save you time in locating these agencies, ABC's of Russian Women has already categorized these agencies by country and city. Refer to the Marriage Agency section of this web site and select "Agencies by country/city"
Initial Interest Via Letters
In the topic "Contemplating marriage", I stated my goal is to help you be happily married, not just married. To this end, the best advice I can give you is an introduction letter is the best way to determine initial interest. Based on personal correspondence with Russian women and conversations with dozens of other American men who also pursued correspondence, I can confidently state that letters provide an excellent means to know someone initially - to determine whether there is enough common ground/interests to then extend the effort to physically meet one another. The How-To topic "Deciding whom to meet in Russia" provides further insight on deciding who to meet based on letters.
If an introduction letter is good for establishing initial interest of meeting, should prolonged correspondence be even better? From my perspective, the answer has changed from Yes to No. For both my 1992 trip to Moscow and 1998 trip to Kiev, I believed prolonged correspondence was the best process. But armed with this experience, I have subsequently changed my mind. I still believe letters are the best method to establish initial interest, but letters can not reveal the physical compatibility between a man and women. Two people may be a perfect match on paper, but the physical desire, chemistry, passion, or whatever you want to call it may be absent. Having meet hundred's of Russian women for the purpose of marriage, I feel it only takes a couple hours to determine initial physical compatibility. Think about it, how many times have you been on a first date with an American woman and within minutes knew there was no physical attraction. Different nationalities and language do not prevent the same type of initial physical impression. To be blunt, within minutes a physical meeting may wash away years of interest nurtured via correspondence.
Therefore, my recommendation of letters for the purpose of marriage is simply this. When you travel to Russia, try to meet as many women as possible who have responded to your initial letter of introduction. Try to meet 2 to 4 women each day, in one to two-hour casual meetings. Then in the evening have dinner with the woman you are most interested in.
This recommendation also works well from the woman's perspective. Beautiful Russian women have become barraged with letters for the purpose of marriage. If a woman receives 50 plus letters, she simply does not have the time to maintain prolonged correspondence - especially hand writing every letter. If the woman does not speak English, it may take her days to write one letter - translating with a dictionary. Additionally, Russian women are becoming jaded to maintaining prolonged correspondence with men that never come to personally meet them.
To make this recommendation a reality, you must be concerned about geographical logistics. I recommend you travel to the hometown (or close to it) of the women you want to meet. The alternative is for you to establish a central location in Russia and have the women travel to meet you. This would be an expensive alternative, with you paying for the women's transportation costs. Also, it would be an insult for the woman to travel hundreds of miles only to spend one to two-hours with you. The next logistical component you must consider is where the women live. Before you buy a single woman's address or write a letter, think about geography. Look at a map of Russian and think about logistics of travel. Do you want to visit one city or a group of cites? How will you travel, by air, train, car? The process may seem backwards, but you need to decide your travel plans and then start correspondence with women located in the cities you will visit. The How-To topic "Travel arrangements to Russia" will help you with your travel plans.
Sincerity of Letters
When I first started correspondence with Russian women, I was extremely skeptical that letters would be an effective medium for meeting my future wife. I had never corresponded with a woman for the purpose of marriage or knew anyone who had engaged in such correspondence. However, after receiving dozens of first and second response letters from the Russian women I corresponded with, I was amazed with the sincerity of their letters. The women were candid and open about their feelings regarding themselves and the type of man they wanted to marry. Even Natasha expressed surprise with the feelings associated with letters in her second response letter to me. "It is funny, but I never felt liking to a person by exchanging letters only. All your thoughts, wishes, aspirations are very close to mine." Responding to their letters, I found myself expressing emotions even my closest of friends didn't know about me. Typically people find it difficult to look someone directly in the eyes and express their true feelings. However, letters provide a wonderful medium for transcending personal reservations, allowing you to focus on your marriage ideals.
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